KICK­OFF

Record Observer - - Sports -

coach Bren­don Ire­ton, rep­re­sent­ing the Tro­jans along with full­back/line­backer Si­las Phillips and ju­nior line­man Matt Hart­man. “I don’t ex­pect our quar­ter­backs to carry the ball as much. Si­las car­ries the ball a lot and we have some other guys. B.K. Saun­ders is go­ing to be a se­nior. He’s go­ing to be a firstyear foot­ball player, played lacrosse for us last year. He’s a big­ger guy. He’s a phys­i­cal player on the lacrosse field, so he’ll prob­a­bly get some car­ries. Bran­don Jones, who’s a trans­fer from Elk­ton. He’s go­ing to be a sopho­more. He played on the var­sity dur­ing their play­off run.”

Fresh­man Ty Wil­son is also ex­pected to carry the ball for Kent.

“We lost a lot of faces from last year; how­ever, we’ve got a pretty good young group that’s com­ing up,” Ire­ton said. “I feel like our of­fen­sive line is go­ing to be one of our strong suits. I think we have a lot of team speed. They’ve had a re­ally good sum­mer, some of the younger guys, so we’re ex­pect­ing a lot of new faces to step up and re­place some of the faces that grad­u­ated or left.”

The Tro­jans re­cently learned Ar­ca­dia (Va.) was not go­ing to play them this year, leav­ing a void that needs to be filled for Week 9. “I’ve got two leads I’m work­ing on, so we’ll see what hap­pens,” Ire­ton said.

North Caro­line went 9-3 last sea­son and reached the Class 2A East Re­gion fi­nal, fall­ing to Elk­ton 33-20.

“We’re ex­cited. I think we’ve got a good group of guys, some tal­ent,” Bull­dogs head coach James McCormick said. “They’re our guys that have been with us for a long time. They have ex­pe­ri­ence and they’ve had some suc­cess, so we’re ex­cited about the sea­son. Hope­fully, a lot of things have to come to­gether for us to have the suc­cess we’ve had the last cou­ple years. If we can get it to­gether, maybe we’ll have the op­por­tu­nity to play a cou­ple ex­tra games at the end of the sea­son.”

Se­nior quar­ter­back Cody Pep­per and se­nior strong safety Owen Joseph at­tended Mon­day’s event. The Bull­dogs will need to re­place three line starters on of­fense and two on de­fense. Jamion Franklin, who has signed with Notre Dame, should re­quire plenty of fo­cus from op­po­nents.

The Bull­dogs run a Wing-T of­fense.

“I want to be able to move the ball down the field, just punch it, yard by yard,” said Pep­per, who ex­pects to hand the ball off a lot to se­nior run­ning back David Bai­ley, who signed with Bos­ton Col­lege.

Queen Anne’s, which went 9-2 last sea­son, will be look­ing to fill holes.

“We lost a lot of qual­ity play­ers,” Lions head coach Donny Graef said. “We were talk­ing on the way down here; we have to re­place the whole of­fense. We had 11 starters who are gone now. But the work ethic’s there. A lot of kids are go­ing to get their chance to play this year. They’ve got to step up and be ready.”

Also rep­re­sent­ing the Lions were two-way play­ers: line­men Aaron Rovenolt and Nick D’An­gelo, and slot back/strong safety Chris Crow.

“I think there’s def­i­nitely a lot of po­ten­tial [com­ing from jayvee],” Crow said. “They work hard in the weight room. They just need to show them­selves.”

“The line’s look­ing pretty good,” Rovenolt said. “I think we’re go­ing to have a lot of size. Run­ning game’s go­ing to be pretty good.”

Asked how the line would han­dle North Caro­line’s Franklin, D’An­gelo said: “I think re­ally it’s go­ing to come down to a com­bi­na­tion of size, strength, and tech­nique.”

Jor­dan Mar­ciano re­turns for his se­nior year at quar­ter­back for Kent Is­land. He at­tended along with se­nior guard Gar­rett Red­den and head coach Damian Fer­rag­amo, last year’s con­fer­ence coach of the year.

Last year, the Buc­ca­neers went 9-2 and qual­i­fied for the play­offs for a ninth straight sea­son, their sec­ond with Fer­rag­amo at the helm.

“We only lost 11 play­ers, which is an ex­tremely small grad­u­at­ing class,” Fer­rag­amo said, “but within those 11 we grad­u­ated a lot of touch­downs. … We had three tail­backs last year and they were all se­niors. We have some big shoes to fill. I think one of our strengths is our re­ceiv­ing corps and the ath­letes that we have out there, so you may see the ball in the air a lit­tle more than in the past from a Kent Is­land team.”

“The line’s go­ing to be good. They’re go­ing to be re­ally ag­gres­sive,” Mar­ciano said. “They know what they’re do­ing, so I put my faith in them.”

Fer­rag­amo thinks the Bucs’ of­fen­sive line will also be one of the team’s strengths. “I think there’s as many as 10 guys who are com­pet­ing for those five spots.”

“We’ve just got to stay ag­gres­sive and work as a unit re­ally, whether it’s with our line­men, or tail­backs, or quar­ter­back,” Red­den said.

Class 1A Colonel Richard­son, the only North Bay­side team without a win­ning record last year, hopes to reach five wins this sea­son.

“We only have five se­niors gone [from last year],” Colonels head coach Dan Mangum said. “We fin­ished last year 4 and 5. We missed the play­offs barely for the sec­ond year. We were 4 and 6 the year be­fore. Last year we had a team drop late and we couldn’t re­place them. I think we have more depth this year. We play a 10-game sched­ule and I think we

PHOTO BY CHRIS KNAUSS

Kent Is­land head foot­ball coach Damian Fer­rag­amo with play­ers Gar­rett Red­den (61) and Jor­dan Mar­ciano (10) at the 2017 Bay­side Con­fer­ence Me­dia Day on Mon­day af­ter­noon at the Dorch­ester Ca­reer and Tech­nol­ogy Cen­ter.

PHO­TOS BY CHRIS KNAUSS

Eas­ton as­sis­tant foot­ball coach Pat McGlinchey, right, and play­ers Ma­son Led­ford (10), left, and Carter Tay­lor (50) at the 2017 Bay­side Con­fer­ence Me­dia Day on Mon­day af­ter­noon at the Dorch­ester Ca­reer and Tech­nol­ogy Cen­ter.

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